Friday, June 29, 2007

they still wouldn't let him call himself Luke Skywalker

I've been reading Bound By Law: Tales from the Public Domain, which is a distillation of copyright law and fair use in comic book form, and is a pretty good introduction to the topic if you can look beyond the crappy illustrations (which would not be out of place in a religious tract or college newspaper).
Anyway, there's a section where they synopsize some landmark fair use cases. One of these is "Campbell v. Rose-Acuff", which was when the rights holders for the Roy Orbison hit "Pretty Woman" sought to prevent 2 Live Crew from using the riff and melody in their song, "Pretty Woman".
In the '90's, this is the sort of thing the Supreme Court was busy with. Ah, the good ol' days...
The Supremes decided that 2 Live Crew's Pretty Woman constituted parody. In their decision they wrote that 2 Live Crew's Pretty Woman "juxtaposes the romantic musings of a man whose fantasy comes true, with degrading taunts, a bawdy demand for sex, and a sigh of relief from paternal responsibility".
Tell me the judges didn't have fun with that one.
Now I'll try one:

The Black Eyed Peas' song "My Humps" features a narrative in which it is inquired of a young woman how she plans to use various anatomical attributes, referred to in the song variously as "junk" "lumps" and "hump". The young woman replies that she anticipates utilizing said attributes to intoxicate the viewer and extort gifts from such.

I guess I need some practice before I'm ready for the bench. The bench. The bench the bench the bench...

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